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Full text of "The American telescope"

CO&XECTJON 

OF 

NORTH CAROIIN1ANA 



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THE 



AMERICAN 



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BY 



A CLODHOPPER 



01 



NORTH CAROLINA. 



PHILADELPHIA , 
PRINTED FOR THE AUTHOR, 

1825. 



y 



THB 



IT is now about fifteen years since the Mission- 
ary cause was introduced into North Carolina, with 
great show of zeal, and love for the poor Indians oti 
our continent. Their deplorable condition was de- 
picted in the most lively colours, and with all that 
sympathy and apparent feeling for their poor lost 
souls, calculated to soften a heart of stone, and 
awaken in the coldest-hearted christian, the most 
earnest emotions for their salvation. But there was 
something then, and ever has been, that I dreaded 
as a viper full of deadly poison. Although it was 
glossed over with the love of souls ; the worth of 
souls; starving souls for want of knowledge, &c.&c. 
with all the embellishments of fine language, and 
great talents in teaching ; added to which, were 
many tears, much show of feeling, and semblance of 
christian sincerity ; yet I could not help being filled 
with a jealousy, that there was death in the pot. — 
And I have stood as an opposer and observer ever 
since, and now offer the public a few thoughts, and 
hazard some conjectures, on the future consequences 
of the Missionary and other societies, abounding in 
our land of freedom. 

In the first place, several associated bodies pro- 
ceeded to appoint delegates ; say, four or five from 
each of their respective bodies, to form a convention 
or Missionary board, to lay a plan for the conversion 
' of the heathen; (for no man could be found among 
all the seeming feeling ones for poor Indian souls, 
that would comply with the command of Christ: to 
take neither gold, nor silver, nor scrip ; neither two 
eoats ; and go into all the world and preach the gos- 

NO 



?»el to every creature, without money or price.) — 
These delegated divines, therefore, met together at 
, to hold the mighty council, to form the benevo- 
lent plan of converting the Indians, quickly. And 
what is the result of their deliberations on so impor- 
tant a subject? Why, money! money! Let (he 
people give us of their money, and the mighty work 
can be done. What ? men do the work with money, 
which none but God can do by his grace and spirit ! 
Folly indeed — but the plan was drawn, and this is 
as near the spirit and principle of it, as I am able to 
describe — 

First : We must take all possible care to make the 
case of the Indians as bad as we can. Secondly: 
We must show with great zeal, how much our hearts 
feel, by affectation only, since we are not willing to 
s;o ourselves j and if need should so require to get a 
Mttle more money, we must shed some tears before 
our congregations. Thirdly: Our Missionary texts 
must be well chosen and pathetically handled, to ex- 
cite the sympathy of our hearers, and open their 
hearts to the Indians; and then while they are in 
that soft state, let a collection be made, and we shall 
draw plentifully from their pockets. Fourthly : Let 
various societies be formed, to take in members at 
one or two dollars a year, for membership ; and 
have so much at one time to constitute one a member 
or a director for life, and this will greatly contribute 
to our getting money. Fifthly : Let us create titles, 
such as presidents, vice-presidents, corresponding 
necretaries, and treasurers, in these new societies, 
with boards of directors, and other unheard of titles 
of honour in the New Testament ; and this will be 
a good bait; since men delight to be honoured, and 
[save their names carried abroad, and no doubt cause 
many to do much in aiding our schemes of getting 
money. Sixthly: Let travelling beggars be appoint- 
ed, crying wherever they- go — give! give us of 
your money to convert the heathen. How unlike the 
prophets, John the Baptist, Jesus Christ, the apos- 



5 

ties, a Luther, a George Whitfield, a Wesley, a 
Dow, and a thousand others, who are ornaments to 
the free gospel of Christ ; all impressed with the 
worth of souls ; and who go forth taking up their 
cross, denying themselves, and devoting themselves 
to the work of God, for the good of men : dependant 
on God, without hegging or being shamefully backed 
by monied societies. 

By hard squeezing, somewhere about seven hun- 
dred and fifty dollars was collected, and deposited 
with Mr. Treasurer, until further orders from this 
board of wise divines, and set of new schemers in 
gospel theory. They met, and met again, from year 
to year, to re-organize their plan of money getting. 
Some years after, out comes a shameful Circular 
from this wise board, (when they had found out. they 
were but men,) that if any man that had given, 
wanted his money back, be could have it, by apply^ 
ing; but that they were persuaded better things of 
of them that had given ; (a proof of their vanity and 
folly ; for they now plead the hostility of the In- 
dians, and want of proper persons to teach school, 
&c. &c.) Soon the great and mighty institutions of 
foreign and domestic missions, with bible societies 
and theological seminaries, were circulated, with 
all the high encomiums that the English language 
could furnish ; and into them, they and their per- 
verted funds began to fall. Now, in this mighty 
field to do wonders, in sending the gospel to the 
destitute at home and abroad, to work this wise 
board of directors go, with redoubled ardour, setting 
the wisdom of all their heads to work, to invent new 
plans of getting more money — and how they may, 
by the by, handle a little of the precious stuff them- 
selves, I shall here notice, as the people seem to 
bleed pretty freely. 

And so, Seventhly : While in council they make a 
bargain, you comb my head, and I will scratch your 
back ; — you confer on me the honourable title of gos- 
pel beggar or missionary hireling, at one dollar and 

A 2 



6 

twenty-five cents #er da)', or forty dollars per 
month, if you think I have a good talent for begging; 
or I will beg for you, if you will pay me for my ser- 
vices ; or I will play into your hands, if you will 
play into mine — share the profits. Cheat and fleece 
the people out of their hard earnings, upon condi- 
tion you will let me beg in the name of your honour- 
able society ; for I am ashamed to beg for myself, 
lest the people raise the hue and cry — money hunter, 
&c. 

What abominable hypocrisy ! If the cause es- 
poused be holy, just, virtuous and honourable, why 
not come openly out to the world, and tell the con- 
gregations that you have been hired by the board 
of domestic or foreign missions, for one dollar and 
twenty five cents per day, to beg for them ; and that 
the beggar and the board are to divide the money, 
and all over wages is to be saved for other hirelings, 
doctors, and reverends ; then congregations would 
know how to act, and such characters act more 
worthy the Christian minister and honest man. 

Eighthly: The sound destitute, destitute, desti- 
tute places of the gospel, must re-echo in all our 
churches, to work upon our hearers to get more mo- 
ney in our exhausting coffers, and keep our fingers 
greased; for who can go without a fine coat and 
plenty of money ! And where have domestic mis- 
sionaries gone ? Have they gone to the most desti- 
tute parts of North Carolina, and other places ? 
No. Believe me — these hirelings like to be fed on 
better fare than the poor can give them — they like 
the houses of colonels, squires, and to have very 
rich and fat tables and stables, where their horses 
will be well provided for; and to ride good roads : 
in short, the main point is to go about towns, and 
to the richest churches and neighbourhoods, where 
the most money is to be begged : — and their conduct 
proves it, with all their pretence of the love of souls. 
1 wish, indeed, that money may not make the 
preacher go, as well as the mare. 



These beggars keep a mighty cry about the des- 
titute. Why not go to them, if their hearts are so af- 
fected about their condition, and then we shall have 
cause to say, souls, and not money, is their object. 
But they tell us, money is wanting ; and when they 
have begged enough, then they are going to send 
preachers to the destitute. How much will be 
enough ? They have had their thousands, and I do 
not yet see that the destitute places in Nortli Caro- 
lina are a whit the better supplied; and I doubt 
whether they would be, if the benevolent public 
were to give thousands more. The beggars, in all 
probability, would still get the greatest part, for 
riding where they could sell, what they call gospel, 
to the highest bidder, and find the most money. — 
The conduct of some, in several instances, has pro- 
ved the fact, that money was the main object. For 
as soon as they had got that, they have bid the 
churches farewell, and gone to see where they could 
find more. 

But who are they going to send, when they get 
money enough ? Why, say they, « men of God." 
That is a mistake ; God's ministers are not hire- 
lings; they do not divine for money, like Balaam, 
nor run up and down the country, hired, this way 
and that way, as the current of gain shifts. Nor 
are they anxious, like Judas, to have the bag, and 
receive their thirty pieces of silver. In this text, 
we see the character of a minister of God : " Feed 
the flock of God, over which the Holy Ghost has 
made you overseers; taking the oversight thereof 
willingly, and of a ready mind, and not for filthy 
lucre's sake." But if they send ministers at all to 
the destitute, they will send hirelings, Judases or 
Balaam's. For if they will not go for the love of 
God and the good of souls, but you must give them 
money to make them move, I contend, that money is 
the main-spring of action — the great wheel that gives 
motion to their going. The sake, is filthy lucre or 
money, since no sake could move them but money 



8 

sake. Furnish money, and what crowds are moving 
in every direction, hunting money, fortunes, and 
places of profit. Stop the money, and you would see 
a squandering among these Judases at once. But, 
you would see God's ministers, like regular stars, 
moving each one in his own sphere, with his work 
before him, feeding the iiock with life, enduring po- 
verty and every thing else, if need be, for the cause 
of God, and the souls of men. — In a word, like the 
prophets and apostles, stemming every opposition ; 
and counting every thing but loss, so that they can 
win souls to Christ. 

The true ministers of Christ are always more 
ready to give, than receive. But the men sent out 
by missionary boards, in this day, will be only a 
curse, instead of a blessing, to God's Israel. Their 
discourses, generally, are without life or substance, 
and are a burthen to the godly. And they squint 
an eye to a purse, with as much intenseness as ever 
Eve did at the forbidden fruit. 

Some great writer has said, this is an age of won- 
ders ; and I begin to think it is so indeed; for the 
idea I used to entertain of beggars, was, that they 
were poor, decripped, ragged, helpless beings, des- 
titute of the means of supporting themselves. But 
how wonderfully times have changed ; for now we 
see hearty, hale men, and young men in the prime 
and vigour of life, clothed in the finest black and 
blue broad cloth, with fur hats, boots, spurs, silk 
jackets, silver tipped bridles and stirrups, watches, 
&c. &c. turned beggars — great beggars. They tell 
us, they beg for the sake of Christ and the heathen ,* 
but fortunately for us all, these fellows cannot keep 
the cat in the wallet ,• for one of these northern beg- 
gars, not long since, passed throughjNorth Carolina, 
and being asked how much he had collected, he said 
about two thousand dollars. And pray, sir, said the 
inquirer, what per centum do they give you for beg- 
ging? He said his fees would come to about four 
hundred dollars. And pray, sir, are you a preacher 



too : said the inquirer, looking gravely in his face ? 
O yes ! said he, I attempt to preach as I go — hang- 
ing down his head, and throwing his fine broad 
cloth legs over each other, and twisting his watch 
key. Yes, and I think, said the man, a great many 
of you had better be at work, than going about in 
the garb of a preacher, as you pretend, begging the 
poor labourers* for their money ; for you look more 
like a doctor, or a young lawyer, with your frizzled 
foretop and fine clothing, than a preacher. And, I 
suppose, the North Carolinians might have went to 
hell for your preaching, if it had not been for the 
four hundred dollars you expected to get. No, he 
replied, I don't know that I should have come, but 
the society hired me to come, and I must live some 
how; and you'll give something, will you not? No, 
that I wont, said the man. If I have got any thing 
to give, I will give if to our old preacher, who will 
preach whether we pay him or not ; and not to such 
fellows as you, who are riding about dressed up in 
your fine broad cloth, hunting a rich wife, and beg- 
ging money; while I must wear my old tow trowsers, 
and work in the hot sun to maintain such fellows. 
No, that I wont, repeated the man. O yes ! but 
you can, I know, and will give me something, con- 
tinued the beggar. I will not, was the reply. 

These beggars are Jlke hungry mosquetoes — 
knock them off, and they will at you again, and 
again, until they suck your money, if possible. Say, 
and prove, if any man can, that there is one trait of 
true apostolic character in these fellows, and the 
controversy will be at an end. Their love of money 
has betrayed them, as it did Simon Magus. Sent out 
by missionary boards, and not by Jesus Christ, they 
look for profit by fleecing the people ; lugging the 
cause of God, and the care of the heathen in, to aid 
them in getting money. 

Another deep-laid scheme to get money, is, to 
draw up the most affecting and sympathetic ad- 
dresses, to publish in their circulating reports, \b 



10 

which the very boWels of antiquity are often ran- 
sacked, to get something that may touch the feelings 
of the community ; for no other purpose, but to get 
their money. A combination of the best talents are 
employed to form one of these Circulars, which, at 
best, to say no worse of them, are nothing but money 
speculations, human contrivances, and pompous ex- 
pressions, to deceive the hearts of the simple, and 
live on their spoil. 

Some thousands have been sent to India* to sup- 
port the lovers of money there, and turn that land 
of heathenism into a Paradise of saints. And what 
has been done there ? What mighty Works hare been 
wrought by all the hundred of thousands of dollars 
that have been expended, and all the numerous mis- 
sionaries that have been sent, from this and other 
countries ! I have heard, as with the trumpet's 
fame, that about three hundred persons have been, 
at last, persuaded to renounce cast and turn Chris- 
tian, after fifteen or twenty years' labour ; when a 
single Peter, a Paul, a Luther, a Whitfield, a Wes- 
ley, and others, being sent of God, have done more 
in a few days or weeks, without the aid of self- 
created societies, and monied institutions, and nume- 
rous beggars not sanctioned by the word of God, 
nor found in the pages of the New Testament. As 
the churches in this country are now going on, they 
will soon be no better than the church of Rome, and 
the High Church of England; for money and titles 
have always been the object of Popes and Popish 
priests, and also of the clergy of the Church of 
England, who once had the command of sixteen 
thousand weight of tobacco, annually, in this coun- 
try, to turn into money. Titles and money have 
always corrupted the ministry, and they have al- 
ready began to disgrace it in North Carolina. The 
same causes will always produce like effects ; and 
let the true children of God watch and beware. 

But to quiet our fears, and make us tamely ae- 
quiesce, while the " reverend" clergy cut the strings 



11 

of our purses, and put the yoke of tyranny snug on 
our necks, they tell us the mind of God is with his 
people. If they were to tell me the mind of the 
devil was with many in this day, who profess to be 
his servants, I could readily believe it. Can the 
mind of God be, w here the whole soul is engaged 
in schemes to get money ! ! Look and see, if you 
find such a spirit with the prophets, John the Bap- 
tist, and the apostles. No, indeed ! But be still, 
say they j this is the way God is about to usher in 
the glorious millennium. Rather, I say, it is the way 
that the devil will soon triumph over all true reli- 
gion, and aggrandize his transformed ministers, 
and make them pensioners of state. Money atid edu- 
cation are power ; and in the management of skillful 
hands, great effects may, in a short time, be pro- 
duced. 

Can one instance be shown, from the first of Ge- 
nesis to the last of the Revelation, where God has 
ever made.money a means of spreading his religion ? 
Has it not been done by humble and unaustentatious 
persons, specially chosen of God, without any call 
for money ? Look at a Jonah, Peter, Paul, and Bar- 
nabas, all sent on special missions. We hear no- 
thing of money or backing societies, before they can 
go : but now thousands roust be had on hand, and 
good promises for more of the precious stuff, before 
our missionaries can move a peg. And I leave the 
reader to judge, what side such missionaries belong 
to. 

But it seems that the mind of God is not always 
with his people, much less, with those that call them- 
selves his people, but are in reality the devil's peo- 
ple ; or if the devil does not personally preside in the 
chair as president, yet he votes in the voters, and 
that is as good, and much better ; because, he acts 
in the back ground, unsuspected ; and you shall see 
who turns the wheel. 

Was the mind of God with the great Baptist As- 
sociation of Virginia, when they created Samuel 




IS 

Harris Apostle of Virginia ? Did not the devil turn 
the wheel there ? We laugh at the folly now, of that 
set of wise ministers ,• and so will posterity, in years 
to come, at all the unscriptural works of darkness 
now going on, where the devil turns the wheel. 
And who can help thinking the devil turns the 
wheel, where money is hut too plainly seen to be 
the object of each and every movement. 

Was the mind of God with his church and people 
of Israel, at the foot of Mount Horeb, when the peo- 
ple said to that great saint, Aaron : «' Come make 
us gods to go before us into Egypt ; for as for this 
Moses, we wist not what has become of him :" — and 
gave him their gold, jewels and bracelets, of which 
he made the idol calt'j and kicked up such a mighty 
dust, dancing around the god of their own making. 

Was the mind of God with his people, when Jero- 
boam made the two golden calves, and set one in 
Dan and the other in Bethel, and said, «* these are 
thy gods Israel l" Rather, does it nofc show the 
consequences of the Church of God being connected 
with the great men of this world ; for then the devil 
will be sure to turn the wheel. And while our Mis- 
sionary, bible, and tract societies, and theological 
schools, are connected with the men of this world, 
the devil is sure to turn the wheel, and give the 
casting vote in his favour. 

Was the mind of God with the church at Corinth, 
when they perverted the right use of the Lord's 
supper ? 

Was the mind of God with the church of Rome, 
when they began to create titles, bishops, cardinals, 
arch-bishops, universal bishop, sovereign pontiff, 
Christ's vicar, prince of the apostles, &c. &e. — 
These measures were as innocent, I conceive, in 
their first appearance, as presidents, vice-presi- 
dents, corresponding secretaries, recording secreta- 
ries, board of directors, &e. which are all unscrip- 
tural titles, names and offices, unbecoming God's 
people. 



13 

And where did these titles lead to in the end : 
Why they came up to our lord god the Pope, so- 
vereign Pontiff* over the whole world ; having the 
keys of heaven, hell, and purgatory ; and whoever 
would go in, must pay toll to his holiness the Pope, 
and bow to what he thought right, or enter the hell- 
ish inquisition, and suffer death in the most horrid 
forms. All this was brought about by getting off 
gospel ground, under the show of religion, out of the 
warrant of the New Testament. Shall we not then 
take care of those innocent things you call titles, the 
corrupters of the Church of God. These arc the 
scorpians that have stings in their tails, and have 
stricken thousands to ruin. Oh ye sons of Columbia ! 
stand up and look round yourselves ', and behold 
what strides are making by an ever-busy clergy, to 
forge the chains of tyranny for your bodies and con- 
sciences ! Be alarmed, before your necks are in the 
yoke — for these things must come in side-ways, or 
as an entering wedge; and one step off from gospel 
ground, gives room for another, until death is in the 
pot, and the devil at the wheel. 

Was the mind of God with his people, when the 
dissenting clergy from popery in England, ap- 
pointed king Henry head of the Church, and parlia- 
ment the guardians of its affairs ! ! See what fol- 
lowed : persecution, religious taxation, fines and 
imprisonment throughout England — the clergy 
prompting those in power, to do these things for 
their own gain. Surely the devil turned the wheel, 
and voted in the voters. And does it not show us, 
as a beacon, on our own coast, how we should en- 
deavour to keep the Church apart from any influence 
of the men of this world ; for they know not the 
things of the spirit; and hence their influence is 
always bad. But the clergy want to get hold of 
their fat purses, and this is the way they have taken 
to do it: to build a sort of National Church, and let 
them come into it for pay ; having a fixed price for 
members, directors, and presidents for life ; and so 

B 



14 

they make a sort of half- brothers of the governors 
and rich men of this world. 

As for God's putting it in the hearts of his people 
to go this \va} r to work to convert the world, it is 
what I cannot yet believe. . For God cannot change, 
nor do I think he will change his plan of carrying 
on his work ; — and what monied institutions and so- 
cieties do we find, supporting the prophets among 
the Jews ;-— or what self-created bodies for obtaining 
money, backed the apostles, and first preachers of 
the gf.spel ?. Let some example, or authority, be 
shown from the word of God, if it can be. The au- 
thority of mm will not answer for me, in a business 
of such importance. Give me — thus saith the Lord, 
or else give up the point. 

Did monied societies support the Reformers ? No; 
they hazarded all, and suffered the loss of all things 
for the sake of Christ. Hence we see, that this mo- 
dern practice of spreading religion by means of 
money, and monied societies, is neither sanctioned 
by the word of God, nor the example of the pro- 
phets, the apostles* or the reformers ; but well agrees 
with the Church of Rome, and high Church of En- 
gland. The cry of money, money, is heard through- 
out the Church of Rome, from the pope to the friar; 
and in the Church of England, from the bishop down 
to the warden constable. 

Has God, after four thousand years, changed his 
plan of carrying on his work? Or has He lately 
seen that monied institutions are necessary means 
for converting the world ? Certainly not, but the 
Lord's way of carrying on his work, does not suit 
men of high minds, who want to be gods themselves, 
and wrest from his hands the power of making 
christians in bis own way ; and prescribe paths for 
Jehovah to walk in that may please themselves, and 
the men of this world. Where, in all the Scriptures, 
shall we -find any self-created societies, and monied 
institutions, to advance the cause of true religion ! 
And if they cannot be found there, a man must be 
blind not to see that they are mere human inven- 



15 

(ions ; and that the devil is turning the wheel ; and 
will only corrupt the Church, and make mankind 
more degenerate and wicked. 

Monied institutions have supported the church of 
Rome, and high church of England, in their thirst 
for aggrandizement, and to lord it over the con- 
sciences of men. But dissenters, in no age, until 
oflate, or ahout a century, have needed any such 
support. As for the Gospel, one of its chief glories 
is, that it stands on the arm of Omnipotence, and 
commends itself to the consciences of men — making 
its way through the kingdoms of this world, in spite 
of all opposition. Though the heathen rage, and 
kings, and governors, and rulers of this world, have 
stood up against the Gospel and God's anointed, 
and have employed prisons, gibbets, flames, and 
death, in all their torturing forms, yet have they not 
prevailed. 

And how is it, that the rulers of this world, and the 
rich, and noble of the earth, who have in all ages 
opposed the Gospel, and voted against it, have now 
become its votaries and supporters ! ! I would as 
soon believe that the devil is turned a saint at last, 
as to believe this thing — that human nature should 
be so changed without a work of grace upon the 
heart. The troth lies here ; the men of this world 
have always been willing to support that which was 
called Gospel, or a form of religion, but not the 
thing itself; for that they hate, and have in all ages 
of the world. To support the mere form of religion, 
or a false religion, corrupt men have always been 
ready enough. Witness their readiness to support 
idolatry — to support the See of Rome — the Cru- 
sades! the Pagan — Mahometan, and all such false 
and formal religions ! Witness how zealous the 
Pharisees were to support their forms of error, and 
the traditions of the elders, at the exgence of the 
blood of Christ and his apostles ! Witness the Pagan 
emperors, putting hundreds of thousands to death, 
to support their absurd Paganism ! Witness the 
high church of England, and church of Rome, de- 



16 

stroking and persecuting the most pious in their 
borders, to support a form of godliness of their own 
invention, suited to the taste of corrupt lords, dukes, 
kings, queens, and emperors ! Can I, with all these 
truths before me, and many more, believe that the 
pompous proceedings, and monied schemes of the 
present day, are of God ! ! It is only because the 
devil is in all these schemes and inventions, that his 
children support them, and honour them with their 
presence and approbation. This one circumstance 
is sufficient to convince me that these great works 
are not of God, and will only prove an injury to the 
cause of true religion. 

It is certain, that all the pomp and show we now 
see, for promoting the Lord's work, will at last be 
brought to naught ; because it is not the way of 
God's choosing. And he will clear all this rubbish 
away, and afterwards work in his own way, and by 
instruments of his own choice. For our Lord 
saith, « marvel not that the world hate you ; for you 
know it hated me before it hated you. It hateth me, 
because I testify the deeds thereof are evil." What 
then ! do natural men support him and his cause, 
when they have hated him and his cause in all ages ? 
How inconsistent in itself! It is supporting the 
thing in appearance only, or that which has a show 
pi" the cause of Christ, but which, in r< ality, is the 
devil's cause in masquerade. And this has been the 
manner of the devil, from the days of Cain, dowii to 
Constantiue the Great ; to set up a form of religion, 
in opposition to the true religion by grace and faith, 
and maintain it in the world, by men of this world ; 
condemning, killing, and destroying, by athousand 
infernal tortures, ail the children of God that oppose 
it. But, in the days of C«»nstantine, he seems to 
have come to his senses ; and, as if he saw, that the 
massacre of millions could not stop the progress of 
the religion of Jesus Christ ; or, as if gorged with 
blood, op satisfied with cruelty, he comes to a cessa- 
sion of arms, all on a sudden; and sits still, as an 
idle spectator, for a good while. During this time, 



17 

Constantino repeals all persecuting laws, and then 
establishes religion by law j honouring the ministers 
of the Gospel — giving them salaries, and making 
every thing in religion grand, rich and pompous 

But how soon does the devil improve on this 
plan, and turn all into show and form again ; — and 
then follows persecution of the saints ,• which has 
shown itself more or less in every country throughout 
Christendom. In England, though they cast off" the 
cruel yoke of Popery, yet they set up the idol of 
uniformity; manifestingthe same persecuting spirit, 
and contending, by kings, queens, lords of parlia- 
ment, magistrates, and constables, for the support 
of a form of godliness, and will- worship ; at the 
same time, opposing the Gospel in its purity and 
simplicity; and fining and imprtteoning those who 
adhered to it. How dangerous then is a formftf re- 
ligion, armed with the civil power ! and how dan- 
gerous to trust a body of learned and monied clergy, 
with any kind of power. Our fathers who composed 
the convention to form the Contitution of the State 
of North Carolina, knew the danger of these men ; 
therefore, inserted an article that no minister of the 
Gospel, having the cure of souls, should have a seat 
in either house of the Legislature. They had tasted 
the gall and venom of this tribe of money-getting 
characters, and therefore, guarded against them in 
that article. And if it were not for this article, we 
should see them electioneering, this way and that 
way, to get into the Legislature. And could they 
once obtain an ascendency in the government, they 
would ride rough-shod over the consciences and pro- 
perty of the people, like all other tyrants. There 
would be no danger in letting the good become mem- 
bers, but to keep out the bad and designing, our fa- 
thers thought best to keep all out — and they were 
right. 

It has been said, that money and education are 

power. And does not money and education fill the 

offices of state ? Does not money and education levy 

war, and carry it on? What would America have 

B 2 



18 

done in the revolution, had it not been For her wise 
counsellors, continental money, and the silver crowns 
of France ! And what would the missionary socie- 
ties do for runners and beggars, if it were not for 
money ! What would the Pope of Rome have done 
for priests to carry about his indulgences and par- 
dons to sell, had it not been for money, a part of 
which went to pay the priests for their trouble, and 
the balance was for the Pope to carry on his schemes. 
It is just so with many of our modern priests : money 
causes them to go about ; a part of what they get 
they have for begging; and the balance is for the 
Board of Directors to carry on their plans and 
■schemes. And what they will do in the end, time 
only can reveal. We see them now making mighty 
strides in every pUrt of the union, to get hold of 
money, and what new tricks and schemes are to be 
played under the mask of religious benevolence to 
attain something out of view, and not heretofore 
known in the devil's politics, is left wholly to conjec- 
ture. 

I have been told of late, the Baptists were like 
Israel without a king. Now the Israelites desired 
'Samuel to ask the Lord to give them a king that 
they might be like the nations around them, and have 
a great man to fight their battles and go in and out 
before them, but some of our modern Baptists are 
not so condescending to God as Israel was, to ask of 
him a great man, or men to go before them ; or 
agreeably to the words of Christ, " pray to the Lord 
of the harvest to send out more labourers into his 
vineyard;'' but to be like the Church of England, 
and the Presbyterians around them, they have 
without any authority from the Lord, set up a priest- 
ly polishing machine at head quarters, to polish 
over young men, and make great ministers of them, 
to fight their battles and go in and out before them. 
Are they afraid to trust their cause with God any 
longer, and so have rejected him after enjoying his 
protection such a length of time, and will they now 
depend on an arm of flesh ? 



X 



19 

The church of Rome, and other churches, tried 
the experiment of making great learned divines, 
and soon these great divines, bishops, parsons, cu- 
rates and friars, must have great salaries, and be 
maintained in high dignity by the people. And so 
it will be with these young doctors from head quar- 
ters, after going through the polishing machine ; 
for, work they cannot, though they will not be 
ashamed to beg, since it has become fashionable for 
divines in broad cloth to follow this trade. 1 should 
like to know how many we have among us that 
would rather go to doctor Greatman for instruction, 
than to Jesus Christ, and would prefer to show them- 
selves approved men for talents and learning, than 
study to show themselves approved of God for a holy, 
pious, humble life ; or diligence in the ministry, 
knowledge of the holy Scriptures, having their mi- 
nistry written on the tables of many hearts — by the 
power of the spirit of God attending their unpolish- 
ed discourses, to the salvation of men ! 

If what I hear be true, that there are about twelve 
thousand in all the various polishing machines in 
this country, preparing themselves to hunt fortunes, 
live without work, and to please the world, and these 
like devouring locusts, are soon to be let loose, fly- 
ing to the most populous towns and cities, and look- 
ing about in every hole and corner of the union, 
where the fattest purse is to be had ; in order to 
live on the labours of others, in pomp and style — for 
one, I pray, they may keep away from North Caro- 
lina; for we have fortune hunters and beggars 
enough already, who produce disputes, jars and dis- 
cord among brethren of the same church, if we re- 
fuse to give, and are unwilling to be stripped of our 
hard earnings ; while our evcry-day, but faithful 
and humble ministers, are neglected, and can 
scarcely procure decent clothing, and provide the 
necessaries of life for themselves and families. 

But we are told by some of our doctors and reve- 
rends, that they do not undertake to make ministers 
out of any sort of men ; — that they do not think to 



§0 

change the heart, or call any one to the ministry. 
This, they let us know, they leave for God to do ; 
while their machine is for giving the last polish' — the 
finishing touch to their qualifications ; which opera- 
tion, is considered far superior, to enable them to 
please men, than any thing God has done to them, 
or can be expected to do. Now, in the name of the 
best of causes, and for its sake, I ask them, to give 
me example or precept from the word of God, or 
show any of the prophets, John the Baptist, or any 
of the apostles, who, after being called of God to 
their respective missions, that ever went to school, 
or to study under Dr. Greatman, in order to learn 
how to preach, or what to preaeh! No example or 
precept from the word of God, can be produced in 
support of such a practice ; and it is evident, that 
these theological schools, or machines for polishing 
ministers, are the inventions of the devil, who is 
working in the back ground, to undermine the 
Church of God. and corrupt the ministry and society 
in general, and fill the world with oppression, 
wretchedness, and misery. 

Look, and see, among the prophets and apostles, 
whether the Lord had such respect to education and 
learning! What sort of men did he choose, for the 
most part, to preach his gospel ? and what sort of 
men has he chosen, in all ages of the Church, to de- 
clare his counsel unto men ? Peter, John, and all the 
apostles, Paul excepted, were unlearned and unlet- 
tered men ; yet, Christ made this no bar, hindrance, 
or disqualification, to their being his apostles ; and 
generally, in all ages of the Church, God has chosen 
the poor and unlearned to preach his word ; and 
made them mighty, through grace, to the pulling 
down of the stroitg holds of satan's kingdom ; in 
order, that the power might be of God, and not of 
men. This cannot be denied ; yet our doctors of 
divinity are trying to pervert the order of God, or 
help him to finish the work of qualifying ministers. 
Hear Paul's observations on ministers, &c. '« God 
hath chosen the foolish things of the world, to con- 



Si 

found the wise ; and the weak things of the world, 
the base, the despised, and things which are not, 
hath God chosen:" for what? that no Jlesh should 
glory in his presence. And these observations agree 
Mill God's conduct in the choic of ministers in all 
ages, except in a few cases. But u*ir wise and learn- 
ed doctors, have found out a mo; e excellent way, 
they think, than God'3 way ; — they are going to in- 
struct and polish numerous young men for the min- 
istry. They may ruin them, but they cannot better 
them, unless it be to please men. To better them, 
to please God or profit his church and people, they 
cannot. For preaching is a gift — the gift of God; 
and what doctors of divinity are not able to give. 

I do not think myself guilty of a breach of reli- 
gious charity, in spying, that these polishing ma- 
chines, lately established fu* qualifying young men 
to preach, are of the devil, and from high-minded 
tnen, who want to maintain their cause by human 
strength, and an arm of flesh. These high-minded 
doctors seem, indeed, to me, like some men, who 
dislike their Maker's work, in making the handsome 
and elegant horse. Say some, his ears are too 
long — they must be cropt ; — say others, his tail 
hangs too much down, — he must be nicked before he 
can piease us: and to work they go, to better the 
Creator's work, or to make a horse to their own 
liking. Just so with our learned doctors : after 
God has converted and called a poor young man to 
the ministry, and furnished him with every needful 
qualiiicati >n, and directed him to go and preach his 
gospel, it will not answer — he does not please the 
doctors — he does not speak grammar, nor is he elo- 
quent enough to command the respect of the people. 
He is not even polite in his manners, and does not 
know h(fw to conduct himself properly in genteel 
company. He must be altered before he will answer 
for a preacher, or he able to please the people, and 
obtain a salary. Thus the proud and high minded 
of this world, have, in all ages, set at naught God's 
ministers, and have heaped up to themselves teach*- 



ers, having itching ears, who have sounded forth 
their own praise, and had an eye to the purse. 

But God's ministers seek not to go forth in the 
excellency of speech, and of man's wisdom ; for 
they know that the wisdom of this world is foolish- 
ness with God, and they wish to speak as of the 
ability which God giveth them. But something of 
the hands of man must be on ministers in this day, 
before they can preach to please ; and to work doc- 
tors go, to make them more than God has thought 
proper to do. Thus they become deformed and dis- 
figured ; first, by cropping their long ears of hu- 
mility in dress and manners, and giving them a 
proud, dressy carriage, and the polite manners of a 
young lawyer — which in a minister of the humble 
Jesus, is more offensive to the pious, than the 
vilest reptile. Secondly, they learn them to run 
straight for the purse ; and, where the most money 
and the largest salaries are to be got. Thirdly, they 
learn them to speak in high flown words, and pom- 
pous expressions, so that the poor and unlearned 
are not able to understand them; and thus they be- 
come as barbarians to them that hear. Fourthly, 
they are made to despise the poor, of which class 
they once were, before made gentlemen, fortune- 
hunters, &c. Fifthly, all equality among ministers 
is destroyed ; and, at length, none must be allowed 
to preach at all, unless they are learned men : and 
thus the apostles will be put in the back ground, as 
well as most of God's ministers, and the devil will 
hear the chief sway in all the churches. Then, all 
who live godly in Christ Jesus, will suffer persecu- 
tion, as in former times; for, unregenerate and high 
minded priests, have been the greatest persecutors 
of the righteous in every age of the world. 

When doctors and reverends saunter, and hanker 
about state legislators, members of congress, and 
fawn on governors, and chief men of state, cringing 
and begging, it is time for Americans to look out. 
They are not walking in the footsteps of the Apos- 
tles, but are seeking their own ends ; and are endea- 



S3 

vouring to bring together church and state. Nay, 
it seems, this unnatural connexion is now begun, if 
we look at the minutes of the Missionary, Tract, 
Bible and Theological Education Societies, and see 
whose names are there enrolled as donors, officers, 
&c. &c. 

The Emperor Constantine, and his men of state, 
with the clergy's juggling together, produced the 
devil in the end, though all was fair weather at first, 
as it is now among us. But storms gathered, and 
at length burst forth in fury and destruction to the 
people of God. The kings of England, parliament, 
and the clergy, began to play into each others hands — 
and what has been the effect ? Let us beware of 
new and unseriptural projects. — Look at Peter the 
Hermit, in rags, running bare-foot from city to city, 
preaching up the crusades, t)r holy wars as they 
were termed — drawing kingdoms into this popular 
scheme, and causing the destruction of about thir- 
teen thousand lives in this foolish new project. 
"What destruction is witnessed, when church and 
state meet together ! Look at the priests in France, 
with crucifixes in their hands, encouraging the 
blood-thirsty Catholics in the murder of sixty thou- 
sand Protestants in a night ! Look at the** Pope of 
RoHlie, sending his priests to Baptise at the point of 
the sword ; and, because the Welehmen refused, 
slaughtered them by thousands! Look at king 
George, sending his learned priests into this coun- 
try, and fixing a salary on them of sixteen thousand 
pounds of tobacco a year, to maintain them in idle- 
ness, luxury and pride ! Look at the whippings and 
imprisonings of the Baptists, in Virginia, and other 
states, by means of these same well fed priests! 
Money and learning out of their proper place, or 
improperly used, corrupt the church and ministry of 
God. And these corrupting societies overturn any 
government, however strong its foundation may be 
at first laid. Because, there is a combination^ ta- 
lents, interest and party spirit ; which if strong 
enough, will prevail over all impediments, destroy 



liberty of conscience, establish its own power, and 
fill the land with oppression, wretchedness and mi- 
sery. Money is a good thing — education is a good 
thing — power is a good thing — iaw is a good thing— 
and death is a go->d thing — hot. they must all stand 
in their proper nlac^ — be us»d by a proper hand — j 
regulated by a right spirit, and for a right end ; else j 
they become scourges of the worst kind to human 
beings. 

|C?" It is deemed proper to state, that the author of I 
the foregoing pages is a member of the Baptist Churchy \ 
in JVorth Carolina, in very respectable standing. This 
statement, however, is made, without the knowledge or i 
eonsent of the writer. 



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